#Dotted among those names are a handful of students who stand alone in scoring a perfect 50, often in less popular subjects.
#Claire is one of them – the only student in the state to make the honour roll for getting a perfect score in environmental science.
#She enrolled because she wanted to know more about climate change.
“#Especially for students, we are all thinking about it because it is going to impact our futures a lot, but I didn’t fully understand how climate change occurs and the proper ramifications and consequences of it,” #Claire said.
#She found herself immersed in a subject that looks dispassionately at the relationship between humans and the environment and the social and economic pros and cons of development, fossil fuel consumption and renewable energy.
#For example, one assessment involved analysing the economic and environmental impact of building a bridge to an island, then making a call on whether it was an ecologically sustainable development.
“I have never learnt about the environment and climate change or humans impacting on it the way that I did in environmental science,” she said.
#In 2020, fewer than 300 students enrolled in extended investigation, a newish subject that lets kids choose their own topic of interest and obsessively drill down into it for a year.
#Sharni #Seamons, a year 11 student at #Beaconhills #College in #Berwick, was the only student to score 50, a shock result that caused her to burst into tears.
“I still can’t quite believe it,” she said.
#Sharni investigated the portrayal of women in pop music videos and if it influenced adolescent girls’ views about gender roles.
#Her research involved many hours of reading critical texts, marathon viewings of the 100 most popular music videos on #YouTube and a controlled screening in which she got two groups of teenage girls to watch two sets of videos, one with sexualised representations of women and one without.
#Sharni said the subject enabled her to develop her interest in feminism in a way no other subject in the VCE curriculum could have.
“#That’s where [extended investigation] was really useful, that I could really investigate something that I wouldn’t have the opportunity to do if I hadn’t done the subject,” she said.
#Her teacher, #Alan #James, said he was surprised the subject had not taken off more since it was introduced in 2014, and said there was a “big fear factor” about taking it on.
“#It doesn’t attract a wider audience, even though the world of education is crying out for so-called 21st century skills of self-directed learning,” he said.
#Elsewhere, #Sofia #Tuszynski of #Catholic girls’ school #Sacre #Coeur was the only student on the honour roll with a 50 in #Australian history, #Luci #Whitelake of #Princes #Hill #Secondary #College was all alone with a 50 in classical studies and #Ballarat #Clarendon #College’s #Monique #Gelatly was the only student to score 50 in health (VCE VET).
#Just two students scored a 50 in business (VCE VET); #Erin #Joy and #Mia #Blackman, both of who were in the same class at MLC.
#Erin said she revelled in how practical and focused the unit was on preparing students to work in business, including a compulsory stint of work experience, which she spent in a real estate office.
“A lot of the other subjects are very theory-based, no real world experience, so it was nice to get a bit of insight,” she said.
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#Adam #Carey is #Education #Editor. #He joined The #Age in 2007 and has previously covered state politics, transport, general news, the arts and food.
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